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Moscow ombudsperson studying proposals to amend election legislation

MOSCOW, July 29. /TASS/. Moscow Human Rights Commissioner Tatyana Potyaeva plans to work, together with experts, on proposals to improve legislation in terms of elections and holding rallies.

"A staff member of the office has been included in the working group at the Moscow Election Commission to study the authenticity of signatures and the decision to bar candidates from elections to the Moscow City Duma. We will soon convene a council of experts and work on the issue with the federal ombudsperson. [Chairman of the Presidential Council for Civil Society and Human Rights] Mikhail Alexandrovich Fedotov is too concerned about the issue. This is not a short-term solution, we need to look into the matter thoroughly. Of course, we will outline all our proposals and submit them to lawmakers <…> We are now concerned about signatures, because the issue has caused problems, so we need to improve something," she said.

Potyaeva added that the commissioner’s office would study proposals to the legislation regarding holding rallies.

On July 27, police officers and Russian National Guard members detained over 1,000 people for taking part in an unauthorized rally in central Moscow. According to the police, more than 3,500 people took part in the event. Police earlier reported that 295 people had been detained for violating public order.

Officials earlier warned the participants about responsibility and inadmissibility of breaking the law. Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin said that, according to the law enforcement agencies, provocations were being prepared posing a threat to people’s life, health and safety. The Interior Ministry’s Moscow Main Directorate likewise called for refraining from participation in the rally and promised to take all necessary measures to ensure citizens’ security and prevent any breach of public order.